New York Attorney General Letitia James announced Wednesday that she's bringing a $250 million civil suit against President Trump, three of his adult children, and Trump Organization executives Allan Weisselberg and Jeff McConney for inflating Trump’s net worth and the values of his properties. We learn several things from this:
1. Letitia James is up for re-election on November 8.
2. Letitia James is trying to fulfill her original campaign promise to “get Trump.”
(Yes, she actually ran on this very issue in 2018–- but try as she might, she didn’t have evidence for a criminal case. If she had, she would've brought one.)
3. Letitia James shows us that the weaponization of the federal bureaucracy extends into some of the states as well, certainly her own.
(During her campaign, she said she “would join with other attorneys general across this nation in removing this President from Office.”)
4. Letitia James is up for re-election on November 8. Did I say that already?
5. It’s a good thing --- if you’re Letitia James talking about President Trump –- to say a duly-elected President is illegitimate.
(In a campaign ad from 2018, she said, “I’m running for attorney general because I will never be afraid to challenge this illegitimate President, when our fundamental rights are at stake.”)
6. Last but not least, did I mention that Letitia James is up for re-election on November 8?
See how much we learned? During her campaign in 2018, she smiled into the camera and said, “Oh, we’re going to definitely sue him. We’re gonna be a real pain in the a--. He’s going to know my name personally.” (In other words: Show me the man, and I’ll show you the crime. We’ll figure out the charges later.)
A footnote in this new court filing says she’s passing along her findings to federal prosecutors in Manhattan, who could possibly open a criminal investigation into bank fraud. Never mind that the Manhattan DA’s office has been investigating Trump and his family for years and finally declined to press criminal charges.
James, in her press conference Wednesday, said she’s going after Trump for such nefarious activities as exaggerating the size of his apartment square footage. He did this to “deceive banks and deceive the people of the great state of New York.” She even came up with this really, really clever turn of phrase that no one’s ever thought of before: “the art of the steal.” Isn’t that creative?
Legal expert Harmeet Dhillon said on Tucker's show that James seems “obsessed” with Trump and denies the legitimacy of his election. (Note: it’s fine when Democrats are “election deniers.”) Dhillon noted that James is trailing in the polls and suggested this is really about boosting her ratings. James absolutely could not find any crime on which to indict Trump, so she’s filed a 220-page complaint and gone the civil-suit route instead.
As Dhillon pointed out, fraud has a statute of limitations of six years, and what James is looking at goes back even to before Trump was in office. It’s “stale, old stuff,” she said, “that nobody bothered about until this time.”
And this is key: “What we’re really talking about is valuation of assets that were heavily negotiated with banks.” James’ complaint displays “a shocking naivete about the realties of business, about the realities of how properties are financed...” This is “small-potatoes stuff.” The banks never even complained; there was no victim. If anyone else had done it, it would not be singled out. This is “entirely political,” she said, and “not how an attorney general in the United States should be using their awesome power.”
This report from THE DAILY CALLER includes the statement from Trump attorney Alina Habba. “Today’s filing is neither focused on the facts nor the law,” she said. “Rather, it is solely focused on advancing the Attorney General’s political agenda.”
Kurt Schlichter has some fun with this development in a series of tweets predicting how this “dog’s breakfast of a complaint” will go. He reminds us that you can’t have a civil suit without allegations of harm: “You cannot sue if you did not suffer a loss.” He says “there are reasons to dismiss that just leap off the page.”
RELATED: I don’t always agree with what former Attorney General Bill Barr has to say, but when he’s right, he’s right.
Barr recognizes a “political hit job” when he sees one, and when a politician’s children are dragged into it, that’s a tip-off, he says. Trump’s kids wouldn’t know the details of his personal financial statement.
He thinks this attack on Trump could backfire in a big way, with Trump seen as a sympathetic figure. He said this was “another example of of people piling on because of Trump Derangement Syndrome.” Letitia James has got it so bad, she really should stay quarantined indefinitely.